Diane notches up her Second #1 UK Soul Album

Diane Shaw - UK Soul Chart No.1
2018 – Diane Shaw releases the long-awaited follow-up Studio Album ‘Second Chance’ and does it again!

Diane notches up her Second NO.1 UK SOUL ALBUM

Her 2015 debut album ‘Love, Life & Strings’ was labelled ‘The Best Soul Album of the 21st Century’ by Tower Records in Tokyo.

It spent 2 weeks at the top of the UK Soul Charts gaining critical industry acclaim and worldwide airplay after being championed on BBC Radio 2 and 6 Music by DJ’s including Craig Charles and Tony Blackburn.

Following on the heels of that success, Diane Shaw now finally brings her much anticipated follow up set ‘Second Chance’ which expands on the theme incorporating that winning formula of old school arrangements and real musicians rarely heard in this day and age.
Real songs are at the core of Diane’s concept for her own music style, and this album is comprised of 12 brand new ‘Future Classic’ Soul Songs.

‘Second Chance’ has been in the working for over 18 months now, and tracks have been handpicked from a variety of sources, original writers as well as industry veterans. We have been very fortunate to get our hands on some rare gems unreleased by songwriting greats.
She also has a new song written by the legend Michael McDonald which has never been released, and has been rearranged it into a great mid-tempo track.

An unreleased Motown track written by Jimmy Webb in 1963 was also found and rearranged and should hit the spot for the dancefloors of the Northern Soul scene.

Slightly different from her first album, Diane has introduced a few classic modern soul-style dance numbers in the vein of classic Philly Soul and similar, and she once again took on the immense challenge of ditching the computers for the recording with a full live band in the hope of recreating that real authentic feel once again.

SECOND CHANCE reached:
NO.1 on the UK SOUL Chart (2 Weeks)
NO.1 on the Solar Sweet Rhythm Chart (3 Weeks)
#1 on the AMAZON R&B/Soul Chart
#1 on the Soul Train Radio Airplay Chart
NO.2 on the 2018 SoulWalking ‘Best of’ Chart
NO.5 on the Mi-Soul Soul Connoisseurs Chart
Diane Shaw - Second Chance

Second Chance available on Vinyl LP, CD and download.

 

Notable Album Reviews:  

TOBY WALKER – SOULWALKING.COM  ✭✭✭✭✭

…’A National Treasure’……’The woman and her team, are, quite simply, superb!’

Is it really 3 years since Diane Shaw released her debut album ‘Love, Life & Strings’? Yikes! Time really does fly.

That album embedded itself into most of the better charts, for a large part of that year, and quite rightly so. In the same way the group Soulutions, just get on with making the music they understand, and love the most, the same applies to Diane Shaw.  At times her sound is set in an early Seventies, Detroit Spinners-esque vibe, and then she sneaks in to a Sixties mode, before returning to her Real Soul pastures, musically. Wherever Diane lays her hat, she fully embraces the term ‘song-led’.

Her songs are not pastiches or remakes, but are very much melodies in their own right. I nearly didn’t make track 3 on this album, after first listening to ‘Through The Rain’ (track 2). What a true beauty.

One of 2018’s finest, thus far, and I am sure I will be saying likewise come the end of November this year.  Folks don’t make music of this high standard in pop’s mainstream, so I think I will reside in Soul Music’s ‘quality slipstream’ this year, if the music is going to be of this standard.

‘Second Chance’? There should be no question of ‘chance’ involved in future recordings by this fine singer. She put be placed firmly on the U.K. obligatory musical curriculum! A national treasure!

Now, not forgetting there are 11 further songs following ‘Through The Rain’, cherry picking is a hard task, as I honestly, love the overall product here. ‘(Come Back) Halfway’ will become a live show favourite, I am sure.

I really love the mid-seventies sounding ‘Love Has No Right’, a song out of it’s era today, however, would have been a hit in those times, and should be in 2018.

It’s a shame the hallmark of a good record today, is that it isn’t a huge pop hit! The penultimate ’Shall I Wait For You’ sits perfectly in the albums ‘departure lounge’. An ‘end of the night’ melody, which is a quite moving listen, all told.

Folks like myself, and yourselves (if not the case, what are you doing at this site in the first place! :))) will not be able to have enough of Diane Shaw albums in years to come. More power to her elbow, is all I can say.

The woman and her team, are, quite simply, superb!

Highly recommended.

 

SOULANDJAZZANDFUNK.COM ✭✭✭✭✭

…’A set that Surpasses the excellence of ‘Life, Love And Strings”……’one of UK soul’s best kept secrets!’

By now every self-respecting soul fan should be award of Ms Diane Shaw. The UK singer has been an in-demand session singer and live backing vocalist for many, many years while her 2015 long player ‘Life, Love And Strings’ was both critically acclaimed and commercially successful. Indeed one soul commentator went as far as describing the album “the best soul set of the 21st century so far!”

How on earth can you follow that up? Well, quite simple really – offer more of the same. Select some proper songs (you know ones with memorable melodies, meaningful lyrics, beginnings, middles and ends), arrange and produce them sympathetically, use real instruments wherever possible and allow one of the best soul voices in the business to do its stuff. In essence, that’s what ‘Second Chance’ is all about.

The long player is a 13 tracker and though it’s an overused cliché, there’s isn’t one dud amongst them. That said, it’s clearly churlish to cherry pick standouts and highlights. Each cut offers up its own treasures but here’s a selection to give you a flavour of what to expect. Here at SJF we’ve always been big, big fans of the songs of Jimmy Webb and we were really excited to see that Diane has included a rarely recorded song of his on ‘Second Chance’. Tune in question is ‘(Come Back) Halfway and it’s a true delight – like a Fifth Dimension classic. We’re told that Webb wrote the catchy song during his tenure with Motown (just before he broke through) and the surprise is how Berry Gordy let this one get away… kind of proves he wasn’t always right!

Gordy also let Holland-Dozier-Holland get away (he didn’t have much choice) and Diane offers her version of one of the mighty trio’s songs here. It’s ‘Remember Me’, which, I think, H-D-H penned for Laura Lee and here Ms and her team turn in a performance that Eddie, Brian and Lamont will, I’m sure, be proud of. It’s one of the album’s up-tempo moments; one of the memorable slower items is a reading of Michael McDonald’s ‘Someone Like You. Then there’s the ab fab burner ‘Through The Rain’.

But hey… we weren’t going to cherry pick!

So enough …. suffice to say that ‘Second Chance’ is every bit as good as its predecessor so the pundit who made the above grandiose “21st century” comment might well need to re-think. We’ll just say that already in 2018 we’vem awarded five stars to two albums – James Hunter and Sir Wick. Now here’s our third!”

(Bill Buckley) 5/5

 

SHARON DAVIS – SOULMUSIC.COM ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭✭✭✭

…”..I’m thinking now there’s little point in highlighting individual tracks because, quite simply, they’re all flawless…10/10…”

It’s been a long three year wait but Diane’s second album wasn’t simply released – it exploded like cannon fire into the public domain.

Such was the anticipation for this album that her management was badgered for sneak previews from the day she announced she was in the studio recording it. Me included! Tell me, can there be a soul fan who hasn’t heard of Diane Shaw – our very own, home grown soul stylist who, modestly, has eclipsed many boasting the same title? I doubt it.

So, how do you follow “Love, Life And Strings”, easily one of the best releases of 2015? Well, you don’t do you. You move gracefully forward with sights set upon delivering another landmark album, and by all things emotional, Diane has cracked it again.

Already dominating most respected soul charts across the country, this collection of material is high octane – from the choice of songs, the music arrangements bringing out the very best from tight, sympathetic and well-honed musicians, and of course the obligatory support vocalists.

The opening track “Remember Me” is cleverly paced as it strums along side stepping a deep unobtrusive rhythm, while “Through The Rain” gently weaves itself around sweeping melodies and plaintive voices; the calm feeling is almost contagious with its familiar sound.

Cherry picking songs from the American soul songbook, Diane’s faultless presentation in voice and lyric interpretation is unique to her individual persona and the recognisable timbre of her voice, as she switches from ballad to uptempo with ease.

Already lifted as a single, “The Day I Found Myself” gave a little insight into the pending album while not preparing us for “Shall I Wait For You” as it slowly manifested itself into a top rate soul track, nor the sultry, yet gracious “All Or Nothing”, with its impeccable sax work.

This made way for a meaty, funky “I’ve Got To Feel It” complete with that recognisable rhythm which Diane loves so much, leaving the full, upbeat and brassy “Love Has No Right” – complete with hot blooded vocals – to deliver the punchiest of hook lines.

With its relentless beat, the album’s title “Second Chance” easily becomes addictive, while…..Hah, I’m thinking now there’s little point in highlighting individual tracks because, quite simply, they’re all flawless – and that’s rare for someone like me with an inbuilt cynical system to admit.

So, has Diane Shaw successfully followed her 2015 album? Hell yes – and then some!
Rating: 10/10

 

You can Preview the Album, and purchase it from the links in the Discography here

 

 

 

 

 

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